Agricultural irrigation in Lake Country is back in operation.
Residential irrigation is back to status quo with odd/even watering schedules that are the norm at this time of year.
As a result of flooding and impacts to the water intake infrastructure, on May 8 the District of Lake Country issued an Urgent Water Notice advising that citizens should restrict their water use to domestic use only with no outdoor irrigation.
Then on May 17, that restriction was eased and domestic water users were requested to irrigate only as absolutely necessary and agricultural water users were requested to only irrigate new plantings.
Significant efforts were undertaken to make repairs to the system and get agricultural irrigation back in operation as quickly as possible.
Farmers and orchardists can now go back to their regular pattern of irrigating.
Properties with five or more acres of irrigation served by the Oyama Lake source must phone 250-575-7043 to let the district know when they will require the irrigation turned on.
Usually it takes over seven hours for the water released from the watershed to reach the district’s water inlet. Unscheduled watering can result in low pressure or no water available.
“Yesterday we sent a letter out to all farmers on the Oyama Lake source saying that it is imperative that they call in 24 hours in advance before turning on or off their irrigation. The number to call is 250-575-7043. Or they can email in their schedule to firstname.lastname@example.org,” said Mike Mitchell, Lake Country water superintendent.
“As well we are asking that agricultural properties water no longer than a 7 day stretch at a time.”
District staff will be patrolling the east side of Wood Lake area. If anyone is found to have their irrigation turned on without calling in first they will be subject to having the irrigation water turned off until they follow the call in protocol in place for the current conditions.
For non-agricultural properties, sprinkling is permitted on alternating days:
Even numbered addresses – even calendar days only
Odd numbered addresses – odd calendar days only
Underground systems with timers – Alternate days only.
The ground is still saturated in many areas and over watering will result in increased ground water levels in parts of the community that are still battling flooding.
Good watering practice is to keep the top layer of ground moist but not saturated.
Everyone is requested to do their part to conserve and use water more efficiently, and to prepare their yards to slow, spread and sink water on site as a conservation method, as well as to reduce stormwater runoff and protect water quality.